Institut für Strategie, Technologie und Organisation (ISTO)

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MBR: Experimental Methods

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MBR Core Course

Prof. Dr. Brooke Shaughnessy, Laura Rosendahl Huber, Ph.D., Dr. Marco Kleine

Course Overview

This course is meant to serve as a rigorous introduction to experimental methods. Its focus is on the current state of the literature in experimental and behavioral economics and on the methodology of economic experiments. In a nutshell, the objectives of the course are to develop among participating students an interest in experimental and behavioral economic research; to acquaint them with some broad fields of research where experiments (both in the lab and in the field) have been used extensively; and, finally, to equip them with the skills that are necessary in order to understand the relevant literature in depth and be able to conduct experiments on their own in the future. Besides experimental economics methods, the course also covers other experimental approaches from management, marketing and psychology.

Course Structure

In the first lectures of the course, the purpose is to equip students with the theoretical and practical background knowledge and skills that are necessary to run and evaluate economic experiments. This part begins with a brief outline of the purpose and history of economic experiments, positioning experiments within the broader area of empirical economic research and also touching upon issues relating to the philosophy of science. Next, the course offers a thorough discussion of the design principles of economic experiments. This part of the course also includes an overview of the analysis of experimental data. In the following, the course turns to the study of some selected literature in experimental economics through the presentation of a number of well-known papers in key research areas such as risk, time and social preferences. Further lectures familiarize the students with the characteristics of field experiments as well as experiments that do not follow experimental economics principles (e.g. experiments in management, marketing and psychology).


Students are expected to actively participate in the discussions, as well as to prepare and present a written assignment/paper. Based on the discussions in class, students should come up with a draft of an experimental project, consisting of the following elements: research idea, related literature, experimental design, hypotheses and expected results. Students will present their projects in class on January 17 th , 2017. This presentation will account for 30% of the grade. The remaining 70% will be based on the written assignment that they hand in. The deadline for the assignment is February 26 th , 2017.



  • The course is held in English
  • Attendance to all lectures of the course is mandatory
  • The number of participants is limited to 20
  • Suggested readings for the course and a list of relevant literature will be given in class and included in the lecture slides
Dates & Location

Thursday, 17.11.2016, 10:00-12:00, Ludwigstr. 28, RG, 024
Thursday, 17.11.2016, 14:00-16:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, C 016
Monday, 21.11.2016, 10:00-12:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, C 016
Monday, 21.11.2016, 14:00-16:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, M 203
Wednesday, 23.11.2016, 10:00-12:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, M 207
Wednesday, 23.11.2016, 14:00-16:00, Ludwigstr. 28, RG, 026
Thursday, 24.11.2016, 10:00-12:00, Ludwigstr. 28, RG, 024
Thursday, 24.11.2016, 14:00-16:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, C 016
Monday, 12.12.2016, 14:00 - 16:00, Geschw.-Scholl-Pl. 1, M 203 
Tuesday, 17.01.2017, 09:00-18:00, Edmund-Rumpler-Str. 9, A 012

Credits 2 SWS in module A/I (Methods Course)
Examination Presentation (30%)
Written assignment (70%) due to Sunday, February 26, 2017.

Further Information

Dainis Zegners, Phone: +49 (0) 89 / 2180 - 6111,